About Me

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North Somerset, United Kingdom
My parents were worried when I ran around with scissors – now I play with fire and (intentionally) break glass! Based in the beautiful South West of England, close to the sea and often the scene of beautiful sunsets, I am inspired by the countryside around. Working with sea glass collected from remote beaches, soda lime glass from Murano, Italy, Europe, USA and beyond, I create artisan beads, for use in my own jewellery or for you to enjoy in your own creations. But I couldn’t stop there; continuing the theme from round rods to flat sheets, mostly from the USA, I break large sheets of transparent, opaque, multi-coloured and dichroic glass into much smaller pieces to make a kiln-formed range of bright, colourful jewellery and home decoration. Each piece I make is individually designed around the shape, size and beauty of the materials and intended to be unique, wearable, usable and affordable. All my glass work is kiln annealed for strength and durability and designed to give pleasure for years to come.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

A grand day out

It's been a bit of a manic week at the 'day job' so we decided that we'd both take a day off and head out somewhere. One of our favourite National Trust properties in the area is at Holt, near Bradford on Avon and Trowbridge. The house isn't open, it's occupied by tenants, but there is a super tea room at the back which does great food with excellent service. Then there are the stunningly beautiful gardens. So here are some pictures.

We were told that there were grass snakes in the ponds but we only saw dragonflies - but they were pretty huge, compare the little blue ones with the big one in the pictures. If you like quieter NT properties then this is one I recommend. It's smaller than many but correspondingly cheaper to get into, although we are members so it's 'free'.

small grotto near the entrance, a delightfully cool place on a hot day

the flowers were in full bloom and the scent from the roses heady

small blue dragonflies were everywhere

and a few larger ones as well!

didn't spot any snakes though ( a change for us)

not sure what this is, but it's impressive

strangely, these gates lead from nowhere, just a grassy area with beautiful trees. perhaps the entrance once came this way?

I think these are Patty's Plum - each time I try to grow them they die within days. I'm not meant to be a poppy baron!

But I'm hoping to manage to grow these large alliums in my own garden next year

Then we went on to the Somerset Lavender farm where I buy my dried lavender for my hand dyed shibori silk lavender bags - I never miss the opportunity to pop in and buy more dried lavender, a few plants (one day I'll have enough of my own not to buy it), their lovely lavender soap and a lavender scone cream tea - just rewards for all that retail therapy.

as you can see the 2009 crop is coming along nicely.

This lavender farm is not far from home, grows, dries and sells its own lavender, makes perfume, sells candles, plants, refreshments and far far more. Smells far nicer than the lavender that your granny used to use and makes wonderful filling for lavender bags. Having tried other suppliers, so many sold me lots of dust and leaves amongst the flower heads; this farm sells quality dried lavender and I now go out of my way to get it.

My lavender bags are available from my Etsy and Folksy shops so click on the link to the right and explore. If you'd prefer different coloured bags to those listed, or want more than one or two, get in touch as I have a lot more stock not listed in my shops.